Trump to Reporter: 'Joe Biden Is a Criminal...And You're a Criminal and the Media for Not Reporting It'

Melanie Arter | October 19, 2020 | 4:00pm EDT
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President Donald Trump speaks to members of the media upon arrival at Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport in Phoenix, Arizona on October 19, 2020. Trump is heading to Prescott, Arizona for a campaign rally. - US President Donald Trump went after top government scientist Anthony Fauci in a call with campaign staffers on October 19, 2020, suggesting the hugely respected and popular doctor was an "idiot." (Photo by MANDEL NGAN/AFP via Getty Images)
President Donald Trump speaks to members of the media upon arrival at Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport in Phoenix, Arizona on October 19, 2020. (Photo by MANDEL NGAN/AFP via Getty Images)

( – President Donald Trump on Monday called Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden “a criminal” and called a reporter and the rest of the media “a criminal” for not reporting it.

Speaking to reporters in Phoenix, Ariz., Reuters White House Correspondent Jeff Mason asked Trump, “Your campaign strategy seems to be to call Biden a criminal. Why is that?”

“He is a criminal. He got caught. Read his laptop, and you know who’s a criminal here? You're a criminal for not reporting it. You are a criminal for not reporting it,” Trump said.

“Let me tell you something. Joe Biden is a criminal, and he's been a criminal for a long time, and you're a criminal and the media for not reporting it,” he said.

The president predicted he will do better than he did in 2016.

“We’re way ahead of where we were in 2016, and I've done things and nobody's ever done. We built the greatest economy in the world, and we’re building it rapidly again,” he said.

"Republican-run states are doing phenomenally,” Trump said, while “Democrat-run state are not, but they're not going to affect our numbers very much. I think it will open up on November 4th.”

He wondered why NBC White House Correspondent Kristen Welker, who will be the moderator of the last presidential debate this week, deleted her Twitter account.

“And by the way, the fact that Kristin Welker is a dyed in the wool radical left Democrat or whatever she is. Then ask -- why are you defending her? Then ask her Why did she delete her account? Would you please have her put her account back? And it's not going to affect -- it's not going to affect me,” Trump said.

“I'm going to be there, but I told you about the last one, and I was right, and I told you about Savannah Guthrie, and I was right, and I'm telling you about Kristin Welker. Kristin Welker put all of her statements back on. She deleted her entire account. She shouldn’t do that,” he said.

When asked whether the moderator should be able to turn off microphones, the president said, “I have no idea.”

Trump said his debate prep is doing interviews.

“What am I doing to prepare? I'm doing this. I've done very well in debates and you do what you do. You just do what you do. The last debate, I had two on one. I usually have two on one at least, and I did well on the last debate, and we did well with Savannah Guthrie based on reports. Look, you go around, we do interviews with you, I call this debate prep. This is actually tougher than the debate if you want to know the truth,” he said.

Trump said he has no problem with doing a COVID test before the debate.

“I would have no problem with it. Not only am my free, positive or whatever—what would you call it? I'm totally free, right? Not only am I free, I'm immune, they say. They say if you've had it, you are immune. The question is, are you immune for four months or for the rest of your life? That's the only thing we don't know,” the president said.

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